Simulcast (2011)
This video was inspired by a lecture I heard in Mexico City in 2005, delivered by Anthony Bannon, Director of George Eastman House. In the lecture, Bannon discussed photographic history and its evolution into digital and time-based media. He likened the uncertainty of what might come next for the medium to driving in a car late at night, with the headlights illuminating only a tiny strip of pavement at a time. The video was produced six years after I first heard the lecture. The footage was captured through the windshield of a moving car on paved and unpaved roads late at night. The only illumination comes from the car's headlights and the occasional farmhouse and passing car. The audio is an edited version of Orson Welles' famous 1938 radio broadcast War of the Worlds, a dramatization of H.G. Wells' novel in which aliens invade earth. Breaking news, bulletins, and interviews by scientists and eyewitnesses periodically interrupt what sounds like a regularly scheduled broadcast of dance music, lending the dramatization an air of veracity; so much so that the original broadcast was the cause of considerable panic. The crackling, analogue radio broadcast and the hypnotic rhythm and isolation of the car driving in darkness set the mood for the compelling narrative and facilitate imaginary projections (was that flickering light in the sky a plane, or was it a crashing meteorite?). The loud digitized and disembodied voice of a GPS device, however, interrupts repeatedly, engendering an anxious digital and analogue dichotomy.

The image above is a still from the video. Click the image to view the video.